1st Electric VTOL Flight In Florida

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Electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft continue to coast forward, and one of the latest landmark achievements from the industry is the first electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) flight in Florida. It’s also the first time that an eVTOL aircraft has taken flight at a major international airport in the US.

Volocopter 2X flies crewed at Tampa International Airport. © Volocopter

The winner of this achievement was Germany-based Volocopter and its VoloCity or Volocopter 2x electric air taxi. The flight, in Tampa, Florida, “wasn’t a single demonstration but a complex, multi-layered flight test campaign conducted with the VoloCity prototype known as the Volocopter 2x, with a pilot on board. Volocopter conducted the flights at the Tampa International Airport (TPA) in collaboration with the FAA (the Federal Aviation Administration).”

Note that this is a 2-passenger aircraft and it is made to use battery swapping. It includes 18 rotors.

Volocopter’s first test flight takes off at NEOM experience center. © Volocopter

Naturally, Volocopter is targeting Florida for initial expansion into the US — and eventual commercial air taxi service here. That is in partnership with Bristow Group. Tampa, Orlando, or Miami would presumably be the launch city. “This eVTOL was specifically designed for quiet, safe, and fast passenger transport in busy urban areas like Tampa,” autoevolution writes. “In preparation for its global expansion, Volocopter is working to obtain both the EASA (the European Union Aviation Safety Agency) and FAA certifications. It’s due to obtain the European one next year, while the FAA type certification process will take a bit longer.”

Left to right: Damien Cazé, Director General of Civil Aviation; Dirk Hoke, CEO of Volocopter; Valérie Précresse, Présidente de la Region Ilê-de-France; Edward Awkwright, Groupe ADP Deputy CEO in front of VoloCity aircraft at the International Paris A. © Nikolay Kazakov for Volocopter.

Volocopter’s eVTOL aircraft are built in Bruchsal, Germany.

See some of our previous Volocopter coverage here:

All images courtesy of Volocopter

 


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